"Honest" Sparring

Discussion on the three big Chinese internals, Yiquan, Bajiquan, Piguazhang and other similar styles.

Re: "Honest" Sparring

Postby Sea.Wolf.Forge on Wed Jun 15, 2022 3:22 pm

origami_itto wrote:What do you believe push hands range is?


Here's a short list of different ranges I see in sparring for clarity:

Outfighting - Kicks and punches at full range without sustained contact beyond parrying/blocking - most of time spent out of range setting up offense
Push hands - striking threat range with arm but not body contact - all punches, limited kicking options.
Clinch - striking threat range with arm and some body contact - too close for most punches and kicks.
Grappling - reduced striking threat options - knee/elbows/head, heavy body contact and pummeling.

Would you disagree with those divisions?
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Re: "Honest" Sparring

Postby marvin8 on Wed Jun 15, 2022 4:36 pm

Sea.Wolf.Forge wrote:
marvin8 wrote:
Sea.Wolf.Forge wrote:I've seen experienced practitioners suffering from things like flinching/blinking to strikes, overreacting to feints, fatiguing quickly under striking pressure, fatiguing quickly under wrestling pressure. The first two are pretty crucial, the last two are relative and more sport oriented but still relevant if the mess someone gets stuck in takes a few minutes to shake off.

One should control the distance, the center line, use deception, entry timing, partner drills, etc. For stamina, learn to relax, running, cardio, sparring longer rounds.


Yes... but do they?

They do, some better than others. MMA (fighting) continues to evolve. They are open to new training and concepts (yours?), whatever helps them become better MAists. I posted examples of strategy, skills and drills here.

Sea.Wolf.Forge wrote:Also - I think people view the benefit of longer rounds incorrectly - a 2min round is done at a much more intense pace than a 3 or 5 minute round because the rest period being built in. If you want to condition yourself to maintain a high pace, short rounds, if you want to condition yourself to be strategic about effort, long rounds.

Yes. That is the prevailing idea, HIIT and LISS. (I may have misread your question.) In self defense, you should prepare for both.
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Re: "Honest" Sparring

Postby origami_itto on Wed Jun 15, 2022 9:09 pm

Sea.Wolf.Forge wrote:
origami_itto wrote:What do you believe push hands range is?


Here's a short list of different ranges I see in sparring for clarity:

Outfighting - Kicks and punches at full range without sustained contact beyond parrying/blocking - most of time spent out of range setting up offense
Push hands - striking threat range with arm but not body contact - all punches, limited kicking options.
Clinch - striking threat range with arm and some body contact - too close for most punches and kicks.
Grappling - reduced striking threat options - knee/elbows/head, heavy body contact and pummeling.

Would you disagree with those divisions?


"Push hands range" is contact.

Well... Before contact too but we're working within your paradigm.
Last edited by origami_itto on Wed Jun 15, 2022 9:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: "Honest" Sparring

Postby Giles on Thu Jun 16, 2022 1:20 am

Push hands is not the be-all-and-end-all -- more conventional sparring is a must, especially if you don't get into actual fights (like me :)) -- but in my experience the basic concept of the push hands training mode can be expanded to include distance and bridging through to clinching and grappling. Why is that good? Because it helps to keep alive and train the essential tai chi-principles of how to deal with force also in more free-ranging situations, and helps to prevent one falling back into standard default mode.

One training option I use: Attacker starts at more than arm's length distance, moving in from the front, from the side or even from behind. Speed can be nice and slow, or faster. Attacker uses one technique, or a combination and has the mindset of 'I'm going to keep coming'. The attacker should never freeze/stop after executing a technique, instead always look to defend himself and continue attacking. Attacker uses a push or a grab or a strike or whatever and defender tries to meet the incoming force with a relaxed, sensing contact, does some kind of 'push hands' with the attacker for a couple of seconds (I'm using the term very loosely here) which should then result in the attacker being unbalanced, or pushed away, or 'falling into a hole' or being taken down/thrown or eating a sequence of potentially deadly techniques that ensure he will never play the violin again (add merciless blood-lust emoticon of choice here). Or not, because the defender was overwhelmed and ate the attacker's force instead. If the defender does well, the attacker doesn't get the chance to use multiple techniques because the first one or two are already utilized well by the defender and the boomerang has returned. Naturally, the defender can also move feet and step in, step back, step to side as necessary. But only minimum of such movements, as there would be no time for more (or even this) at full speed. Defender can also preemptively strike without other contact, if this works out, but only start moving once he senses the attacker has started moving.
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Re: "Honest" Sparring

Postby marvin8 on Thu Jun 16, 2022 1:54 am

Bao wrote:
origami_itto wrote:I don't really know, honestly.
In my experience, live encounters do not resemble sparring so I don't know how useful it is.

...but the last thing I want to do in a self defense situation is snap into a stance and square off with somebody.

Agree 100%.

Real fighting tend to be much mor direct and people tend to be more stationary, they don't jump around as much.

At 1:01, former boxer KOs threat without "stance, guard or jumping." Skills developed in sparring or the ring transfer to the street. Body mechanics are the same.

Former boxer: 1. Stands with his hands down (yin) as attacker approaches 2. listens (ting) for opponent to double weight 3. steps back (na), shifting weight to the back foot (hua), while issuing (fa) right check hook:

Boxing King Media
Jun 13, 2022


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ePiAqqWOT7w&t=1m1s
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Re: "Honest" Sparring

Postby origami_itto on Thu Jun 16, 2022 4:02 am

marvin8 wrote:
Bao wrote:
origami_itto wrote:I don't really know, honestly.
In my experience, live encounters do not resemble sparring so I don't know how useful it is.

...but the last thing I want to do in a self defense situation is snap into a stance and square off with somebody.

Agree 100%.

Real fighting tend to be much mor direct and people tend to be more stationary, they don't jump around as much.

At 1:01, former boxer KOs threat without "stance, guard or jumping." Skills developed in sparring or the ring transfer to the street. Body mechanics are the same.

Former boxer: 1. Stands with his hands down (yin) as attacker approaches 2. listens (ting) for opponent to double weight 3. steps back (na), shifting weight to the back foot (hua), while issuing (fa) right check hook:

Boxing King Media
Jun 13, 2022


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ePiAqqWOT7w&t=1m1s


I would never say that ring fighting doesn't help street fighting.

But that clip illustrates exactly what I'm talking about. Stance no stance he had nothing to read. No aggression displaying to cause them to be more gaurded, he basically presents a honeypot and the only thing he has to think about is the cross when dude is in range.

BUT THAT'S IMPOSSIBLE

You will see very few sport fighters practicing this particular method but it's central to how I approach conflict. I doubt he learned that in the gym.
Last edited by origami_itto on Thu Jun 16, 2022 4:25 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: "Honest" Sparring

Postby windwalker on Thu Jun 16, 2022 7:15 am


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mRJyQ8arMV4


Undoubtedly his training served him well. One can clearly see the influence of it..
different events support different viewpoints :) ...

What ever one does, mindset, resolve, and trigger level plays an important role...
When to engage and when not too.

Did a lot sparing, testing, proving to myself, at a time when the efficiency of CMA was questioned by those who
didn't think to much of it...

Helped a couple of people, as a sparing partner getting ready for their events..
working on timing, sets ups ect...

Different animal than for self defense or testing the art..
Different mind set....
Last edited by windwalker on Thu Jun 16, 2022 4:28 pm, edited 6 times in total.
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Re: "Honest" Sparring

Postby Bao on Thu Jun 16, 2022 7:16 am

origami_itto wrote: But that clip illustrates exactly what I'm talking about.

No aggression displaying to cause them to be more gaurded, he basically presents a honeypot and the only thing he has to think about is the cross when dude is in range.


“Hiding intent.”

“From nothing to something. Something from nothing”

Old basic Tai Chi fighting principles.

Li Yaxuan:
Taijiquan is a skill with shape and without shape. Although it has shape when an opponent attacks you, your whole body must be very reserved and display nearly nothing in there. This will make the opponent catch an empty shadow so to speak and, thus, not harm you. If the enemy thinks you are empty and, on the other hand, if you show your emptiness but can suddenly attack like thunder, thunder so quick and strong that people must duck and cover their ears, so as to make them totally scared, scared for their life, then this is enticing into emptiness. Taijiquan is a skill based on unpredictable opportunity. If the other thinks you cannot attack, you should just move your mind suddenly to attack. If others think you will come then you should transform as if you have nothing to attack. This is the so-called "being suddenly visible; suddenly invisible".

https://www.qi-journal.com/taijiquan/ta ... skill-form
Last edited by Bao on Thu Jun 16, 2022 7:18 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: "Honest" Sparring

Postby origami_itto on Thu Jun 16, 2022 8:18 am

Bao wrote:
origami_itto wrote: But that clip illustrates exactly what I'm talking about.

No aggression displaying to cause them to be more gaurded, he basically presents a honeypot and the only thing he has to think about is the cross when dude is in range.


“Hiding intent.”

“From nothing to something. Something from nothing”

Old basic Tai Chi fighting principles.

Li Yaxuan:
Taijiquan is a skill with shape and without shape. Although it has shape when an opponent attacks you, your whole body must be very reserved and display nearly nothing in there. This will make the opponent catch an empty shadow so to speak and, thus, not harm you. If the enemy thinks you are empty and, on the other hand, if you show your emptiness but can suddenly attack like thunder, thunder so quick and strong that people must duck and cover their ears, so as to make them totally scared, scared for their life, then this is enticing into emptiness. Taijiquan is a skill based on unpredictable opportunity. If the other thinks you cannot attack, you should just move your mind suddenly to attack. If others think you will come then you should transform as if you have nothing to attack. This is the so-called "being suddenly visible; suddenly invisible".

https://www.qi-journal.com/taijiquan/ta ... skill-form


Yes, exactly, and we could go to Musashi for more of the same. Outwardly neutral, inwardly ready. Your every day stance is your fighting stance. I could wax poetic but REALLY need to focus on getting some stuff done at work.
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Re: "Honest" Sparring

Postby Sea.Wolf.Forge on Fri Jun 17, 2022 3:03 pm

origami_itto wrote:
I would never say that ring fighting doesn't help street fighting.

But that clip illustrates exactly what I'm talking about. Stance no stance he had nothing to read. No aggression displaying to cause them to be more gaurded, he basically presents a honeypot and the only thing he has to think about is the cross when dude is in range.

BUT THAT'S IMPOSSIBLE

You will see very few sport fighters practicing this particular method but it's central to how I approach conflict. I doubt he learned that in the gym.


Is no one going to point out the part where the one swinging is about double the size of the guy he drops? If the hallmark of good training is being able to cold-cock and angry smurf these discussions would be much easier. I view the second video of a guy picking off shots as a mob tries to rush him is much more telling of relative skill level but to each their own.
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Re: "Honest" Sparring

Postby marvin8 on Fri Jun 17, 2022 4:21 pm

Sea.Wolf.Forge wrote:
origami_itto wrote:
I would never say that ring fighting doesn't help street fighting.

But that clip illustrates exactly what I'm talking about. Stance no stance he had nothing to read. No aggression displaying to cause them to be more gaurded, he basically presents a honeypot and the only thing he has to think about is the cross when dude is in range.

BUT THAT'S IMPOSSIBLE

You will see very few sport fighters practicing this particular method but it's central to how I approach conflict. I doubt he learned that in the gym.

Is no one going to point out the part where the one swinging is about double the size of the guy he drops? If the hallmark of good training is being able to cold-cock and angry smurf these discussions would be much easier.

The size is obvious. What is not obvious, to you apparently, is the "good training" and skills—which I touched on (without knowing specifics) and linked to. However, it is understandable, since many people have not been taught these fundamental fighting principles and skills. The less obvious skills are usually the most effective.

marvin8 wrote:Not sure of your questions.... One should control the distance, the center line, use deception, entry timing...

I posted examples of strategy, skills and drills here.

... At 1:01, former boxer KOs threat without "stance, guard or jumping." Skills developed in sparring or the ring transfer to the street. Body mechanics are the same.

Former boxer: 1. Stands with his hands down (yin) as attacker approaches 2. listens (ting) for opponent to double weight 3. steps back (na), shifting weight to the back foot (hua), while issuing (fa) right check hook:


Different view:

Image

marvin8 wrote:It appears because they lack the understanding and skill to control/setup (double weight) their opponent before making contact, as I said here. At 2:50 of "Neijiaquan vs Western Fighting," this guy appears to misunderstand by stating, "In modern boxing, the opponent fights back at anytime." Also this tai chi guy at 1:02 says, "Two people touch hands then, change and push to take opponent's balance."

Rather, MMA uses "CMA" concepts and strategies similar to Zhang Yun (tai chi) and Guo Shilei (bagua).

MMAist 1. Circles opponent (na) to lead him to step (I call pull/push footwork). 2. feint jab to lure (yin) forward energy 3. listen (ting) for opponent to double weight 4. change before opponent's front foot lands (hua) 5. issue (fa):
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Re: "Honest" Sparring

Postby Sea.Wolf.Forge on Fri Jun 17, 2022 4:38 pm

marvin8 wrote:The size is obvious. What is not obvious, to you apparently, is the "good training" and skills—which I touched on (without knowing specifics) and linked to. However, it is understandable, since many people have not been taught these fundamental fighting principles and skills. The less obvious skills are usually the most effective.



My point is that even without any training this fight probably ends that way, put whatever flowery words on it you want - the big guy hit the small guy and he dropped like a sack of bricks. If the small guy hit the big guy and had the same effect we could have a conversation about how his training was a factor. I didn't miss a thing, I just think dissecting a mismatch made into a worse mismatch by "good training" isn't the style flex you think it is.
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Re: "Honest" Sparring

Postby marvin8 on Fri Jun 17, 2022 8:01 pm

Sea.Wolf.Forge wrote:
marvin8 wrote:The size is obvious. What is not obvious, to you apparently, is the "good training" and skills—which I touched on (without knowing specifics) and linked to. However, it is understandable, since many people have not been taught these fundamental fighting principles and skills. The less obvious skills are usually the most effective.

My point is that even without any training this fight probably ends that way, put whatever flowery words on it you want - the big guy hit the small guy and he dropped like a sack of bricks.

Not "flowery words," fundamental words. Most people only see "the big guy hit the small guy," not the skill—without understanding, analysis and slow motion. The big guy (Julius Francis), former British heavyweight boxing champion) is age 57, 6' 2", relatively old and overweight. The younger, athletic guy appears 1"or 2" shorter.

Sea.Wolf.Forge wrote:If the small guy hit the big guy and had the same effect we could have a conversation about how his training was a factor. I didn't miss a thing, I just think dissecting a mismatch made into a worse mismatch by "good training" isn't the style flex you think it is.

Not a "style flex," either trained skills are present or not. Hit and don't get hit. Zhang Yun, "In order to be true Taiji skill (higher skill), the first four steps must be present."

This is what the top MMA fighters sparring on the previous page, which I posted, are taught. I posted a clip of George Hickman teaching that here. Excerpt from "Alexander Volkanovski to appear at Bang Tao Muay Thai:"

News on April 15, 2022 wrote:Bang Tao Muay Thai has its grand opening next weekend and two of the biggest names from the sports of kickboxing and MMA will be coming along. UFC featherweight champion Alexander Volkanovski and ONE Championship featherweight kickboxing champion Superbon Banchamek will both be doing seminars....

George Hickman and Frank Hickman used to run the MMA program at Tiger Muay Thai but left to set up their own camp.
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Re: "Honest" Sparring

Postby cloudz on Sat Jun 18, 2022 4:56 am

Sea.Wolf.Forge wrote:In my experience the most important division between training, competitions and real fights is risk of injury.
In training, ideally, a serious freak accident comes up every year or so - along with the galaxy of bruises and sprains we all shrug off.
In competition, ideally, you win without injury, but the impact is higher, there's less padding and the torquing on joints happens faster and less forgivingly. Injuries aren't infrequent, usually a person or two will leave a competition to the ER for an assessment or a few months off (or early retirement).
In "Real fighting" - ideally, it doesn't happen. When it does there's no padding, no mats and very little room for error. Someone gets injured usually, broken noses and teeth, broken this or that, maybe someone died - who knows. There isn't a lot of room for growth there, it works or it doesn't and "good enough" can be pretty ugly and unskilled.

I've had several discussions with my current training partner about the rulesets we currently use to spar, trying to mix the versatility of skills available to use with a decent amount of realism for assessing the potential damage taken in a serious exchange. Where we are now is a mix of rounds in muay thai, kyokushin, mma, and no-gi wrestling, it's not perfect, nothing can be. We had to stop for a few months after a rib injury but we're back to it again and it feels good to be back to swinging at each other.

What rulesets have you found useful in giving meaningful pressure for skill growth and feedback but also limiting injury?

I've seen experienced practitioners suffering from things like flinching/blinking to strikes, overreacting to feints, fatiguing quickly under striking pressure, fatiguing quickly under wrestling pressure. The first two are pretty crucial, the last two are relative and more sport oriented but still relevant if the mess someone gets stuck in takes a few minutes to shake off. Do you feel your training exposed you to these things enough to handle them consistently?


yes agreed, been doing this kind of training for years, very similar formats.

but to list them all i would include the tai chi basics of free pushing as a jumping off point. fixed free pushing > moving step (tai chi stand up grappling) > full wrestling and or submission grappling.
also, at the same time:
boxing > Sanda > MMA
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Re: "Honest" Sparring

Postby Sea.Wolf.Forge on Sat Jun 18, 2022 4:50 pm

marvin8 wrote:Not "flowery words," fundamental words. Most people only see "the big guy hit the small guy," not the skill—without understanding, analysis and slow motion. The big guy (Julius Francis), former British heavyweight boxing champion) is age 57, 6' 2", relatively old and overweight. The younger, athletic guy appears 1"or 2" shorter.

Not a "style flex," either trained skills are present or not. Hit and don't get hit. Zhang Yun, "In order to be true Taiji skill (higher skill), the first four steps must be present."


Since this thread is about "honest sparring" and the ex pro boxer will have thousands of rounds over his career spent punching people in the head who didn't want him to, I'm going to score a win for boxings competitive sparring methods over his apparent mastery of the formless form and intimate knowledge of Taiji Fundamentals.

That the smaller guy dropped because he was blustering around hands down and chin-up so bad even an untrained the bigger man folds him up like a chair 9/10 times.
It's a stupid example of a street "fight" to prove your point - "Hit and don't get hit" only counts if they other guy is trying to hit you, regardless of provocation the bigger guy threw the only punch.
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